A new women’s philanthropy group, known as the Hippodrome Grande Dames  celebrated the 35th anniversary of the Hippodrome mainstage in a big way on April 20, 2016!


The Inaugural Hippodrome Grande Dames at the Evening of Grande Dames Soiree on Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Paige Beck                        Jorgia McAfee

Elizabeth Bedell              Linda McGurn

Kim Bosshardt                Chris Morris

Mary Ellen Burnett        Sara Morsey

Ani Collier                        Esther Negrin

Polly Doughty                  Nell Page

Sandra Fackler                Emily Pritchett

Cherie Fine                      Judy Russell

Caren Gorenberg            Ilene Silverman

Jan Jones                         Midge Smith

Linda Kallman                Betsy Styron

Lucinda Lavelli               Marilyn Tubb

Jacki Levine                    Justine Vaughen

Judy Locascio                 Marilyn Wall

Virginia Maurer             Fulbia Westfall


In honor of the occasion, the Hippodrome Board of Trustees invited a group of women who love the arts to become Inaugural Hippodrome Grande Dames.

This new group is set up to align with research from the Women’s Philanthropy Institute on how women prefer to give. It meets the Six C’s of Women’s Giving, which are create, change, connect, commit, collaborate and celebrate.

Hippodrome Managing Director Jessica Hurov said, “The Hippodrome Theatre is an essential part of the Gainesville community and it represents all that the community aspires to be: a place of inspiration and imagination, a thriving city with the heart of a small town. This group of women embodies our community.”

Become a Hippodrome Grande Dame, and enjoy the following benefits:

  • Two (2)VIP tickets to attend the Evening of Grande Dames Soiree at the Hippodrome
  • Two (2) tickets to attend a mainstage performance
  • Inclusion in the Grande Dames group photo to be displayed in the Hippodrome Lobby
  • 6 Complimentary Hippodrome Mainstage Tickets
  • Name Added to Playbill as a Grande Dame
  • Hippodrome Membership Card
  • Subscription to Donor Newsletter

This collaborative effort can make a tremendous difference in the Gainesville community. The Hippodrome Theatre has an annual economic impact of $4.6 million and the Hippodrome relies on generous gifts and donations throughout the year to thrive. Every dollar of each member’s $1,000 goes directly to fund the Hippodrome’s ongoing programming and operations.

“We are excited to promote the joy and value of giving to other women through the creation of art,” says Lauren Warhol Caldwell, Hippodrome Theatre Artistic Director. “We believe our story to inspire women to make a difference in our community and the art is too huge not to share.”

For more information, to purchase or to gift a membership, contact Jessica Hurov, Managing Director.